Strategies for the New Normal of Leadership

February 22, 2022

Book Review by Taylor Berrett

The Agape Method: A Strange Name for a Powerful System

So, you’re an executive at an established company. You’ve watched how the world has transformed in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic and the overall drive for more flexibility at work. You’re not one of those entrenched, won’t-budge old fogies who insists all of their employees come to work from 9-5, five days a week. You’re aware of where the wind is blowing. You want to offer flexibility to your employees, knowing it will make them happier, more productive, and more likely to stay with your company.

You’re all set, right? Well, not exactly.

Avoiding the Pitfalls of Hybrid Transitions

In his book New Rules for Hybrid Leaders, hybrid work expert Anthony Ally outlines some of the common mistakes that CEOs and other executives can make when adopting a hybrid work environment— mistakes that can actually cause hybrid environments to hurt your company more than they help it.

Ally has certainly been ahead of the curve when it comes to adapting to the hybrid work culture. Over two decades ago, he developed a strategy to help executives at a Fortune 5 company build a hybrid culture that empowered employees to work from home. Since then, he’s applied his unique Agape Model to persuade executives from over 200 global corporations to partner with his team and adopt hybrid work. 

It’s hard to argue with his numbers. Companies that have adopted the Agape Management Model have seen as much as 22x better results in operation centers, 4x growth after years of flatlining, and more.

So what does Ally tell executives to do and— most importantly—not do?

In New Rules for Hybrid Leaders, Ally outlines the fallacy that causes many companies to backtrack on hybrid work. They allow a policy of more remote work, and think that they don’t have to change anything else about the way they engage with, connect with, and educate employees.

Hybrid work means less of some things— less commuting, less office space required, less rigidity. But it also means more investments in connection. You need to put in more effort to educate and onboard new employees who will spend less time in-office absorbing your company culture and policies. You need deeper connections to the employees you already have, ensuring that they feel engaged with their projects and teams. Meanwhile, you need to ensure that your clients and customers also continue to feel engaged by your organization. When the onsite visits, drinks with clients, and in-person pitches go away, you have to be creative about the ways you recreate those connections.

The Bottom Line

Ally’s Agape Model centers around three key factors in a company— harmonized employees, fulfilled hearts, and client evangelists. If you have teams that feel engaged and connected with one another, employees who feel satisfied and inspired by the work they’re doing, and clients who love your work so much that they become your most powerful marketing tool, a hybrid work environment won’t derail your company and will in fact boost purposeful profit that’s at the center of every successful company.


Taylor Berrett

Taylor Berrett is a Contributing Writer at Soundview. He is also a freelance writer, editor, and host of the podcast Alone in a Room. His other book reviews can be found here.